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Galen Jefferson White Jr.

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Galen Jefferson White Jr. Obituary
WHITE, GALEN JEFFERSON JR., 79, died on May 20, 2013 at home, after a long illness.

Galen was born on January 27, 1934, in Jackson, KY, to Galen Jefferson White and Minnie Jameson White. In 1941, the family moved to Lexington, and several years later to Louisville. Galen, a member of the Athenaeum Literary Society, graduated from Louisville Male High School. At Princeton University, he joined Tiger Inn and majored in history, graduating in 1956. After three years in the army, he enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, earning his law degree in 1962.

During his senior year at Princeton, Galen traveled from New Jersey to Poughkeepsie, NY, for a date, arranged by friends, with Vassar College sophomore Ethel Story Wright of Philadelphia, PA. Their courtship, which endured small geographical separations and a large difference of opinion over the rules of the game Monopoly, led to their marriage on October 18, 1958.

Galen practiced law first in Philadelphia, with the firm Dechert, Price & Rhoads. In 1968, Galen and Ethel moved with their three daughters to Louisville, where Galen joined Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs, and where their son was born. Later he became a partner at Boehl, Stopher & Graves. Galen especially enjoyed mentoring and working with younger lawyers. He retired from full-time practice in 1998.

A member of the Lawyers Club and of the vestries of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia, and of St. Francis-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church in Harrods Creek, Kentucky, Galen served nine years as chancellor of the Episcopal Diocese of Kentucky. He was chairman of the board of St. Francis School, Goshen, KY and served on the boards of Ars Femina, the Visiting Nurse Association and Just Solutions. After his retirement, he volunteered as a docent at Farmington, as a reader for Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, and with the Kentucky Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. Some of the joys of his later years included traveling with Ethel to visit their children and grandchildren, adding to his collection of lead soldiers, and meeting every Wednesday with his lunch posse.

Galen is survived by his wife, Ethel; his four children, Joanna Kille, and her husband John, of Arnold, MD, Caroline, of Northampton, MA, Catherine Banigan-White, of Easthampton, MA and Galen III, of Baltimore, MD; three grandchildren, Alexander and Andrew Kille and Charlotte Banigan-White; his two sisters, Ann W. Anderson and Margaret W. Flintom, both of North Carolina; as well as numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews.

He was predeceased by his parents, his son-in-law David Banigan-White and his granddaughter, Elizabeth Banigan-White.

Galen will be remembered for his vigorous mind, his love of music, his ability to recognize a friend he had not seen in decades, his unwavering sense of fairness, his delightful sense of humor, his quiet courage, and his warm and generous heart.

A memorial service will be held 3 p.m. Friday, May 24, 2013 at St. Matthew's Episcopal Church. A reception will follow at his home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to St. Francis School, 233 W. Broadway, Louisville 40202 or Kentucky Natural Lands Trust, 433 Chestnut St., Berea, KY 40403.

Published in The Courier-Journal from May 21 to May 23, 2013
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